In praise of the sexless unicorn




Women’s Month is a great time for us men to reconsider how we conduct ourselves. For dick-swinging Neanderthals to take up less space on trains on their way to the therapist to get in touch with their feelings and admit, for once, that living in a man’s world is not all that it’s cracked up to be.

I often stare back longingly at the much larger women’s section in Edgars, having just been told that men’s scarves are on the second floor where fashion is a two-syllable word that comes in grey or black with matching socks.

Ladies’ restrooms have flowers and smell of fresh mountain dew. I haven’t been in one long enough to take note, but I bet the stall walls are filled with the phone numbers of thriving book clubs.

I have made some small forays into the wonderworld of women to get a taste of a life in which you take care of yourself and respect others.

Short of laying out an outfit on the bed, I think long and hard before I put anything on in the morning. It’s okay to mix and match to get some stand-out on the street, I find. Last year, I started spending time blow-drying my hair. It was great. Still is.

Blow-drying has the added benefits of drying your hair while styling it. I’m running the 1 200W Philips at the moment. I might upgrade to the 2 100W for added power that will leave me with more time to file my nails.

Sadly, regardless of my striking beauty, no man will wolf-whistle in my direction for fear of being called out as gay. And when I get to the office, my boss won’t pinch my butt for the very same reason.

A man’s world is a dull dimension filled with wild assumptions and deep insecurity.

In a man’s world, progress is measured by how much things can stay the same. No challenge is insurmountable provided you can surmount it without talking. Help is never required; fear is never shown; no inch is given.

And 30 days celebrating the empowerment of women won’t change that. Presenting a concept like Women’s Month to a gender so entrenched in their sex is the same as teaching planned parenthood to an ape.

And so I propose Genderless Month: a month when the virtues of a genderless world should be discussed in earnest; a time to consider the infinite happiness of the unicorn — a sexless horse that lives in a magical land of gender-neutral restrooms and rivers of flowing Lindt chocolate.

A month to meet man halfway to show him how far he still has to go. A month for that old adage to read: You strike a woman, you lose a cock.

JS Smit

JS Smit

JS Smit is a Cape Town-based freelance writer. Formally trained as a copywriter, he took a break from ads in 2010 to write a blog for the Mail & Guardian's Thought Leader and since 2015 has written for the Mail & Guardian. Read more from JS Smit

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